Talking Football

2016-06-15 06:00

IT is clear that the Spanish football has found the right formula for their game.

They will be collecting gold medals in the two major European continental competitions. It is also interesting to note that the Uefa Champions League final is being contested by two teams from the same country and city. This will be the second time that two Spanish teams from the same city fight for this trophy.

It becomes clear therefore that South Africa has a lot of work to do considering the eliminations of our teams in continental competitions. It does not help to have a rich league if trophies that matter most cannot be won. Focus needs to move back to the work done within the four white lines.

Spain and Germany are two football nations that have worked very hard to transform their football. Countries that take the education of their children seriously tend to be more successful. Generally, we have become a nation that expect things to happen without putting in any effort.

The education of South African football coaches need to change. It is not possible for players to progress when levels of coaching are low. It is critical that not only the content changes and improves, but also the professionalism of our coaches. The work ethic of South African coaches is not different from professionals in other fields.

I know that people have choices, however, football is a fitness industry. It is important that those that are leaders in the field project a positive image. We cannot preach health and fitness to the youth while our bodies are out of shape. We need to lead by example.

It is disappointing that black football coaches in particular, are out of shape. We lack discipline. How many football coaches continually invest in their development? This is a sickness that affects South African professionals from other fields. We spend more time on things other than our own work.

It was interesting to watch some the action in a match between Chiefs and Chippa. The second goal of Chippa FC was a replica of what happens in the streets across South Africa. This is a strength of South African football.

The challenge lies in developing it into winning football. This requires people that are willing to pull up their sleeves and sweat blood.

Currently, we find it more convenient to cut and paste and claim other people’s work as our own. Money is not a solution to every problem. The truth is that money cannot do the work. Countries like China would be football world champions if money could buy success.

South Africans need to invest time in trying to find out who they are.

The Spanish, and Barcelona in particular, revolutionised football when they unleashed the short guys - Messi, Iniesta, etc., into international football. They proved that if you play to your strength success is guaranteed.

Prior to this the English had sold us an idea that you needed to be a mountain to play football. What are the strengths of South African footballers? I doubt if those leading our game has a clue on this particular topic.

Lastly, the season is over and clubs will be taking a well- deserved break. It is important to acknowledge the role played by football fans. We wish them a good break and hope they come back from the off-season well rested. It is important for club supporters to stick to their roles. You are not coaches, managers or players, you are supporters.

Let us stick to supporting teams and allowing those given other roles to do their work without interference.

Unzima lomthwalo.

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